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Recap: Buffy The Vampire Slayer S 3 E 10 Amends
"It's not the demon in me that needs killing, Buffy. It's the man."

Angel is haunted by the spirits of people he's killed, and the Scooby Gang suspect an ancient evil is involved.

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Fourteen million square miles of them, and that's not including a lot of natural cave formations and a gateway to Hell.
  • A Form You Are Really, Really Not Comfortable With: The First appears in the form of Jenny Calender, killed by Angelus in "Passions".
  • Accidental Innuendo (In-Universe): Joyce is putting up the Christmas decorations; Buffy is thinking about her Erotic Dream.
    Joyce: So, angel's on top again?
    Buffy: (startled) What?
    Joyce: (holds up an angel and a star) Angel or star?
    Buffy: Oh, uh... star. Star.
  • Actor Allusion: The maid Margaret is played by Cornelia Hayes O'Herlihy, who played Princess Margaret in Gods and Monsters.
  • A Friend in Need: Despite their antipathy towards Angel, Giles and Xander work to save him.
  • Always a Bigger Fish
    Willy: Apparently there's been a lot of migration out of Sunnydale from the lower inhabitants. Something's scaring them off, and these are things that aren't easily scared.
  • The Atoner: Xander helps Buffy find out what's wrong with Angel, presumably to make up for his actions re Angel in "Revelations".
  • Behind the Mask: Carrying on the themes raised in "Becoming", this episode deconstructs Angel the Mysterious Protector and Star Crossed Lover. He was a drunken hedonist as a human, now crushed under the guilt of hundreds of years of gleefully sadistic evil. A couple of years as Buffy's champion don't even begin to up for that, even if he hadn't used the opportunity to seduce the woman he was supposed to be protecting. Afraid that he doesn't have the strength of character to resist seducing (and killing) Buffy again, he tries to kill himself.
  • Blatant Lies: Faith turns down Buffy's offer of Christmas dinner, claiming she's already been invited to a big party.
  • Breaking Speech: Plenty of these by the First to Angel.
  • Chekov's Gun: The dead Christmas trees.
  • Christmas Episode
  • Christmas Miracle: It begins snowing on Sunnydale, leaving the town in total darkness, and saving Angel from burning. Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane.
  • Continuity Nod: Joyce claiming that Giles didn't want to share Christmas with them is undoubtedly due to the embarrassing events of "Band Candy".
  • Dissonant Serenity: Giles opens the door to find Angel standing there asking for a Vampire Invitation. He keeps it together and walks into the kitchen, then comes out with a loaded crossbow. Oh, Crap.
  • Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Unless you're Buffy.
    The First: You think you can fight me? I'm not a demon, little girl. I am something that you can't even conceive. The First Evil. Beyond sin, beyond death. I am the thing the darkness fears. You'll never see me, but I am everywhere. Every being, every thought, every drop of hate—
    Buffy: Alright, I get it. You're evil. Do we have to chat about it all day?
    Buffy: Let me guess. Is it...evil?
  • Driven to Suicide: Angel tries to kill himself by allowing the sunrise to immolate him. He's saved.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The First briefly morphs into one before disappearing.
  • Eureka Moment: Buffy realising the dead Christmas trees reveal the location of the Bringers.
  • Erotic Dream: The First gives Angel these to entice him into sleeping with Buffy and losing his soul.
  • Evil Is Burning Hot: A heatwave envelops Sunnydale; as soon as the First Evil is driven off, the temperature drops rapidly, creating snow.
  • Evil Plan: The First wants Angel to kill the Slayer, and in the process turn him back into the evil Angelus. Angel decides to prevent this by committing suicide, but this is also acceptable to the First, as it means Angel can no longer be a weapon against evil.
  • Exact Words / Stealth Pun: Willy says he's picked up some information from the Underground. "You know, from things that live under the ground."
  • Eyeless Face: Bringers, Harbingers. They have a 'no eyes' kinda look.
  • Failed Attempt at Drama: After Willow says she wants to sleep with him, Oz responds by standing up.
    Willow: Where are you going?
    Oz: No, I'm not going. Just a dramatic gesture.
  • Final Boss Preview: The First Evil will return as the Big Bad of Season 7.
  • Foreshadowing: Angel drinking Buffy's blood comes to pass as the First predicts, albeit for different reasons. And we get our first mention of Xander's troubled home life in a reference to him sleeping outside to avoid their drunken squabbles.
    • What Buffy says to Angel "Strong is fighting! It's hard, and it's painful, and it's every day" is what he puts into practice in the spin-off series Angel. That series also continues the theme of higher powers (both good and evil) seeking to control or protect Angel for their own purposes.
    • The First mentions that Liam was a terrible disappointment to his parents - something Angel relives in detail in his own series.
  • Flashback Cut: Showing Angel as the drunken lout he was before being turned into a vampire.
  • Frothy Mugs of Water: Played for Laughs as Willow has a couple of soda bottles in a champagne ice bucket.
  • Ha Ha Ha No: Giles is less than pleased when Angel (who in their last encounter was torturing him) shows up at his doorstep.
    Angel: I'm sorry to bother you.
    Giles: (stares, then bursts out laughing). Sorry. That's just rather funny, coming from you. (Chuckles) "Sorry to bother me."
    Angel: I need your help.
    Giles: And the funny keeps on coming.
  • Hard Work Montage: The Scoobies researching the problem (and eating pizza).
  • Holding Hands / Snow Means Love: Buffy and Angel at the end of the episode. Definitely not Just Friends.
  • Horror Doesn't Settle for Simple Tuesday
  • Humanoid Abomination. The Harbingers
  • I Didn't Mean To Turn You On: Angel encounters Buffy in her bedroom wearing a blood-red dress, her hair pinned up to expose her neck and her lower lip trembling from repressed emotion — he has to jump out the window to prevent himself from jumping her.
  • I Have a Family
    Margaret: (terrified) Sir! My son!
    Angelus: Oh, he'll make a fine dessert.
  • Inadvertent Entrance Cue: Xander asks who else could have as pathetic a social life as he does. Cue Willow walking through the door.
  • Ironic Echo: "Cry out. Make a scene."
  • Insecure Love Interest
  • I Wished You Were Dead: Inverted
    Buffy: I love you so much... And I tried to make you go away... I killed you and it didn't help. (crying) And I hate it! I hate that it's so hard... and that you can hurt me so much. (sobs, then harshly) I know everything that you did, because you did it to me. Oh, God! I wish that I wished you dead. I don't. (whispers) I can't.
  • No Time to Explain: Buffy to Faith — Aesop Amnesia is averted when Buffy stresses that she will explain, all of it, remembering the lesson of "Revelations".
  • Lady in Red: Invoked deliberately by Willow and accidentally by Buffy.
  • Lets Wait Awhile: Oz turns down Willow's offer to lose her virginity, aware she's doing it just to prove she really loves him.
  • Madonna-Whore Complex: Implied when Angelus is forcing his attentions on the maid; presumably the son she refers to was born out of wedlock.
    Angelus: Cry out. Call for help. I'm sure Mistress will believe your behavior beyond reproach. (sneers)
  • Mind Rape: The First tries to pull one on Angel.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: The Harbingers of Death.
  • Ominous Latin Chanting
    Buffy: Alright, ten more minutes of chanting and then you guys have to go to bed.
  • Perp Sweating: Xander isn't very good at it.
    Willy: Doesn't ring a bell.
    Xander: (menacingly) How about I ring that bell for you? (hopefully to Buffy) Does the threatening come now?
    Buffy: Maybe you shouldn't help.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Angelus bullies a servant into agreeing to have sex with him, and then shows her his Game Face.
  • Ready for Lovemaking: Oz enters Willow's house to find a candle-lit room, Willow wearing a tight red dress, and Barry White's "Can't Get Enough of Your Love, Babe" playing on the stereo.
  • The Reveal: We finally discover why Angel was brought out of the hell dimension: to kill Buffy. Buffy is not willing to accept this explanation, and the fact that the First is willing to settle for Angel's suicide is an indication she's right.
  • Say Your Prayers: One of Angelus' victims says the Twenty-third Psalm.
  • Sex for Solace: What the First tempts Angel with — by sleeping with Buffy he can satiate his desire for her and then, by turning evil, be free of guilt forever.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Buffy pulls one on the First Evil, which is the Buffyverse equivalent to Satan, after the latter's Breaking Speech.
  • Suicide By Sunlight: Angel tries to do this, but a miraculous snow shower clouds the sky so the sun doesn't show.
  • Talking Down the Suicidal: Buffy doesn't actually succeed, but fortunately a Christmas miracle occurs instead.
  • Talking in Your Dreams: Buffy is able to see what Angel is dreaming, perhaps in order to further torment him (given that Buffy has a front-row seat on Angelus' crimes). During the Erotic Dream however it's more a case of "Screwing In Your Dreams".
  • Tearjerker: Buffy trying to talk Angel out of killing himself.
  • This and That: Willow offers to "do that thing" with Oz.
  • Twisted Christmas
  • Two Scenes, One Dialogue
    Giles: You realize if he [Angel] truly becomes a danger, you may have to kill him. Again. Can you do that?
    Buffy is silent. Cut to Angel in his mansion
    Angel: I can't do it!
  • The Unreveal: We never find out if the First or the Powers That Be were responsible for bringing Angel out of the hell dimension, or if the snowstorm was due to the sudden drop of temperature or another miracle by the Powers That Be. In the Angel spin-off it's revealed that the forces of both good and evil have a vested interest in his survival, so either party could be involved.
  • Villains Never Lie
    Buffy: Some great evil takes credit for bringing you back and you buy it?
  • Walking Wasteland: The Bringers cause the Christmas trees to wilt over their heads.
  • You Have No Idea Who You're Dealing With: And at this point in the series, Buffy really doesn't know. Then again she doesn't really care either.
The WishRecap/Buffy the Vampire SlayerGingerbread
The Brady Bunch S 1 E 12 The Voice Of ChristmasRecap/Christmas EpisodeBuffy The Vampire Slayer S 3 E 9 The Wish

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